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FPL tips: Managers axe familiar favourites in last-gasp push for glory

Manchester City v Aston Villa – Premier League – Etihad Stadium
(Image credit: Martin Rickett)

Players who were once firm FPL favourites are being brutally axed from squads as managers look to gain an edge in the closing stages of the season.

With just four gameweeks remaining, there is no room for sentiment, as Harry Kane and Patrick Bamford have found to their cost.

Both have been owned by more than 50 per cent of all managers at one point or another this season, but have been sold in their thousands ahead of GW35.

A graphic showing some of the most-sold forwards in the Fantasy Premier League ahead of gameweek 35

While managers may have been more patient with Bamford earlier in the season, a five-game goal drought is difficult to look past this late in the campaign.

Kane however can consider himself a little unfortunate, with two braces in recent weeks hinting at a big end-of-season finale for the England skipper as he targets the Golden Boot.

Manchester City midfielders Kevin De Bruyne and Ilkay Gundogan enjoyed peak ownership of around 40 per cent earlier in the season, but have fallen out of favour ahead of GW35.

A graphic showing some of the most-sold midfielders in the Fantasy Premier League ahead of gameweek 35

Neither have lit up the league in recent weeks, with Gundogan’s purple patch earlier in the season now a distant memory, and De Bruyne missing a number of league fixtures lately.

Pep Guardiola’s dreaded rotation policy looks set to continue, with City having booked their place in the Champions League final later this month – banking on any of his players in the league could be risky.

In defence, John Stones was pushing two million owners after a run of clean sheets interspersed with goals, but his popularity has now fallen below one million.

A graphic showing some of the most-sold defenders in the Fantasy Premier League ahead of gameweek 35

The England defender will also miss his side’s next league game courtesy of a red card against Aston Villa.

Last but not least, Aaron Cresswell has been dropped by tens of thousands of managers ahead of the end of the season.

The West Ham player missed his side’s games against Newcastle and Chelsea, but a favourable fixture list including Brighton, West Brom and Southampton could have sellers in tears if he puts in a handful of solid performances.